On Wednesday, June 28, PAHS staff and Board of Directors, along with donors and dedicated volunteers, joined together at our Legacy Circle event. Each year at the Legacy Circle gathering PAHS inducts new legacy donors into the Circle and recognizes an outstanding volunteer. The Palo Alto Sheraton most graciously provided the beautiful setting and refreshments for the 2017 event.
This year PAHS presented our first award for Youth Volunteer of the Year to Kristen Benz of Fremont. Kristin, who will begin pre-veterinary studies at Cal Poly this fall, contributed greatly to our education program with PACC (Pets: Adoption, Care, and Commitment), a series of videos that teach about the ongoing and lifelong responsibilities of pet care. The videos form a complete guide to understanding how best to care for our pets and reflect Kristen’s deep-seated interest and growing expertise in veterinary issues.
Our Volunteer of the Year award went to Patty Hurley. Patty is a lifelong teacher and advocate for special needs students. She has incorporated in our classroom and after-school presentations activities that build awareness of ways to be kind to others and reject acts of bullying and exclusion, promoting the idea of inclusion of all and an understanding that such inclusion is the basis for humane, or kind, behavior. Her ideas and her Q&A direct style of teaching enthusiastically draw students of all ages into the process of understanding what it means to be humane.
PAHS’ latest inductees into the Legacy Circle are David and Maureen Allen, former Palo Alto residents. David is a computer software engineer, and Maureen, a former teacher and political staffer, was on the PAHS Board of Directors. She was the driving force behind ACR 144, the State Assembly Concurrent Resolution on Humane Education and Character Education that in 2016 passed both houses of the California State Legislature. Maureen was also an education volunteer. For years her dog Rookie, now retired, was the “face” of PAHS’ sessions about dog care and dog safety. Many former and current students fondly remember Rookie and ask about him. Maureen currently serves on the PAHS Board of Advisors.
This Legacy Circle celebration also marked the introduction of the Daisy Fund. Named after Sue Klapholz’ dog Daisy, an adopted shelter dog who has already passed on, the fund will help underwrite emergency veterinary care to the pets of local low-income residents. PAHS’ attention to the needs of this population is unique on the Peninsula and in the Bay Area. Through the kind of safety net guaranteed by the Daisy Fund, PAHS will enable people who might not be able to do so otherwise to keep their pets and give them necessary veterinary care. Sue Klapholz is a longtime friend of PAHS who has participated in many of our past endeavors. We are grateful to Sue for her kind generosity to animals and her commitment to them and to us in our goal of helping as many underserved animals and their people as we can.